Gang who targeted ATMs jailed

 

A gang who trawled the country doing smash and grab ATM burglaries have been jailed for a total of nearly 20 years.

David Owens, 35, Shaun Ennis, 41, and Kevin Caveney, 26, disabled the alarm systems at colleges, service stations, amusement parks and caravan sites before attacking the bank machines to steal the cash inside.

The gang scoured the motorway network looking for targets across the whole of England before pulling off a series of burglaries between January and July of last year.

Owens was jailed for seven years, Ennis received six-and-a-half years and Caveney was handed five years nine months at Preston Crown Court today after admitting a single charge of conspiracy to burgle, police said.

In addition Robin Vaughan, aged 39, was sentenced to 18 months for assisting offenders.

The gang, from Merseyside, were caught after police launched a surveillance operation following five burglaries in West Mercia, Derbyshire, Cleveland, North Yorkshire and Cornwall in early 2011.

On January 9, Pershore College in West Mercia was raided with its ATM machine snatched before raiders fled in a Ford Transit van which was earlier seen in convoy with a Ford Focus registered to David Owens.

On March 30, burglars broke into Topspot service station in Marske, near Redcar in Cleveland and forced open an ATM to steal a quantity of cash.

The following month the restaurant at Flamingo Land in Malton, North Yorkshire was burgled and a large quantity of cash stolen from an ATM that had been forced open with a crowbar.

The previous afternoon, Owens was caught on CCTV with Caveney in the restaurant playing pool.

And on May 21 the St Minver Holiday Park in Wadebridge, Cornwall was burgled by offenders who used hand tools to remove the entire ATM from floor brackets and left in a Vauxhall Insignia.

But a police patrol pursued the Insignia and found it abandoned with the ATM and cash still inside the car.

Enquiries revealed the car had been hired from a rental company in Bootle, Merseyside the day before by Shaun Ennis.

Put under covert surveillance by police, Owens and Caveney were seen on June 16 to drive south down the M6 in a black Audi A3, stopping at various service stations without filling up.

The pair drove into Somerset, then Devon and Cornwall, again visiting motorway services, and occasionally village shops.

All the locations they stopped at had free-standing ATMs.

On July 20, 2011, police officers from Titan, the North West Regional Organised Crime Unit, and Merseyside Police swooped to round up the gang.

A search of Owen's home in Rosewood Close, Stockbridge Village, Liverpool revealed £3,500 in cash, a heavy-duty angle grinder, a five-tonne jack, a large number of cash bags, dust masks and a 2011 British Road Atlas.

From Caveney's home, on Harefield Road in Speke, south Liverpool, officers recovered car hire documents for the Renault Megane used in the Preston College burglary.

And at Ennis's home, from Boode Croft in Stockbridge Village, clothing matching that seen being worn by all three suspects during the operation was found.

In total, detectives believe the four stole a substantial amount of cash from ATMs during eight burglaries between January and July last year, Merseyside Police said.

Detective Inspector Michael Fraser, from the North-West Regional Crime Unit, said: "Today's convictions reflect the persistence of our officers to see that justice is served on offenders who travel the country carrying out crimes.

"The North West Regional Organised Crime Unit works hard with our partners and other forces to detect, prevent and bring offenders prepared to cross borders to commit crimes to justice."

PA

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Isis in Syria: Influential tribal leaders hold secret talks with Western powers and Gulf states over possibility of mobilising against militants

Tribal gathering

Influential clans in Syria have held secret talks with Western powers and Gulf states over the possibility of mobilising against Isis. But they are determined not to be pitted against each other
Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge: A growing population and a compromised and depleted aquifer leaves water in scarce supply for Palestinians

Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge

A growing population and a compromised and depleted aquifer leaves water in scarce supply for Palestinians
10 best trays

Get carried away with 10 best trays

Serve with ceremony on a tray chic carrier
Greece debt crisis: EU 'family' needs to forgive rather than punish an impoverished state

EU 'family' needs to forgive rather than punish an impoverished state

An outbreak of malaria in Greece four years ago helps us understand the crisis, says Robert Fisk
Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge: The traumatised kibbutz on Israel's front line, still recovering from last summer's war with Hamas

Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge

The traumatised kibbutz on Israel's front line, still recovering from last summer's war with Hamas
How to survive electrical storms: What are the chances of being hit by lightning?

Heavy weather

What are the chances of being hit by lightning?
World Bodypainting Festival 2015: Bizarre and brilliant photos celebrate 'the body as art'

World Bodypainting Festival 2015

Bizarre and brilliant photos celebrate 'the body as art'
alt-j: A private jet, a Mercury Prize and Latitude headliners

Don't call us nerds

Craig Mclean meets alt-j - the math-folk act who are flying high
How to find gold: The Californian badlands, digging out crevasses and sifting sludge

How to find gold

Steve Boggan finds himself in the Californian badlands, digging out crevasses and sifting sludge
Singing accents: From Herman's Hermits and David Bowie to Alesha Dixon

Not born in the USA

Lay off Alesha Dixon: songs sound better in US accents, even our national anthem
10 best balsamic vinegars

10 best balsamic vinegars

Drizzle it over salad, enjoy it with ciabatta, marinate vegetables, or use it to add depth to a sauce - this versatile staple is a cook's best friend
Wimbledon 2015: Brief glimpses of the old Venus but Williams sisters' epic wars belong to history

Brief glimpses of the old Venus but Williams sisters' epic wars belong to history

Serena dispatched her elder sister 6-4, 6-3 in eight minutes more than an hour
Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created